Downtown Singapore

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Grande dame, magnificent, traditional, resort-feel

1 Beach Road 65 6337 1886

Show Map What's Nearby: Hotels Restaurants Shops Sights

At a Glance

Like the Mandarin Oriental in Bangkok and the Peninsula Hong Kong, the Raffles Singapore is one of those legendary hotel properties that have set the bar high when it comes to Asian hospitality.

Indagare Loves

  • That each of the 103 sumptuous accommodations are suites, of different categories
  • The spa’s private treatment suite for couples, including a steam shower
  • The property’s chauffeured Daimler or Bentley limousines


Tucked between the gleaming skyscrapers of downtown Singapore’s business district, Raffles takes up an entire city block. There are tropical gardens with age-old trees and ferns, an alfresco shopping arcade with dozens of stores and elegant whitewashed wings that accommodate the majority of the property’s suites. But the heart and soul is the iconic main building, with its elegant wrought-iron-framed entrance, soaring lobby with teak balustrades and balconies, and Art Deco light fixtures. It’s not difficult to picture guests dancing the night away (the hotel used to host lavish balls in the spacious lobby) during its heyday in the 1930s.

The seven grandest suites are in the main building, with fine period furnishings, fourteen-foot ceilings, sumptuous fabrics and an old-world vibe (you wouldn’t be shocked to see Somerset Maugham reading in a corner). The remaining ninety-six suites are clustered in wings that connect to the main building and are centered around two landscaped garden courtyards. Interiors throughout are grand, with reproduction antique furniture, marble-clad bathrooms, Oriental carpets and teak floors. But the rooms’ most recent renovation was in the 1990s, so there are also details that may be less charming to the high-tech traveler, including tube televisions and cord phones. Of course, plugged-in visitors know that they don’t come to Raffles for the latest in technology (even though the property is planning a room overhaul soon).Rather, you check in for the unparalleled service (each suite comes with its own dedicated butler, who is on call twenty-four hours), the history (don’t miss the hall of fame, a wall with priceless black-and-white photographs) and the excellent location within walking distance to the happening waterfront marina area.

There are no fewer than fifteen restaurants and bars on the premises (this sounds a little like Vegas, but considering the size of the property, they are laid out well). Don’t miss the very cool Bar & Billiard Room with its turn-of-the-twentieth-century pool tables and the two-story Long Bar, which hosts live bands in the evenings. The shopping arcade, meanwhile, is spread across two stories and features such haute Asian brands as Jim Thompson, Lotus Arts de Vivre and Lai Chan (the latter carries fantastic contemporary dresses inspired by traditional cheongsams). In sum, the Raffles is a small universe in and of itself, but instead of gong the way of New York’s Plaza, another iconic property that thoroughly lost its way during the course of renovations, this Singapore grand lady has emerged with her heart and soul intact.

Important note: Design mavens will be happier at the Fullerton Bay or even the Ritz-Carlton Singapore, as will those looking for a marina view. Due to the fact that Raffles is one of the area’s smallest buildings in this skyscraper landscape, the rooms have no real views.

Who Should Stay

Raffles is a good choice for travelers who love historic properties that represent a place and can overlook certain high-tech shortcomings for such thoughtful details as inspiring book excerpts left on your bed at turndown.

Indagare Plus Amenities

  • $100 USD Food & Beverage credit for hotel’s own operating venues only, Complimentary Singapore Sling upon arrival for up to 2 people
  • Complimentary Breakfast
  • Upgraded Room Category on Availability at Check-In
  • Late Check-Out on Availability
  • Complimentary WiFi Internet Access

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